Home-sharing company Airbnb paid more than $5 million in Maine taxes on behalf of its hosts in the last year.

In a news release Tuesday, Airbnb said it has collected and remitted $5.3 million from lodging sales since it reached a tax agreement with the state in April 2017.

“Airbnb is an economic mobilizer for everyone, from families sharing their home to make ends meet, to the small businesses benefiting from more guests shopping and eating locally – and even the state of Maine itself,” said Airbnb’s head of Northeast public policy, Josh Meltzer, in a written statement.

The company hopes the “significant and vital revenue stream” generated by Airbnb hosts will “serve as yet another clear example of the economic potential of home sharing around the world,” Meltzer added.

The company’s impact on Maine’s bottom line is still limited. Between April 2017, when it started collecting tax, and this February, Maine took in almost $79 million in overall lodging taxes.

Airbnb has about 4,500 hosts in Maine and welcomed 284,500 guests in 2017, a 62 percent increase from the year before.

The average Airbnb host earned $6,900 in 2017, according to the company. In total, Maine Airbnb hosts earned $43 million last year.

Airbnb is among a number of internet commerce companies, including Amazon, that have confidential agreements with the state to collect sales and other taxes.

Online home-sharing sites like Airbnb have faced criticism in Maine because some hosts have not always collected the required 9 percent state lodging tax from guests.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: